I go back and forth on the importance of calculation in my instruction. It only bugs me when kids don’t even know their basic multiplication.
I’ve posted before about Conrad Wolfram’s efforts to remove calculation from the curriculum and make everything computer based. There is now a website devoted to the initiative (http://computerbasedmath.org) and Conrad Wolfram’s blog recently announced their first country interested in taking up the curriculum: Estonia.
Estonia isn’t too surprising a choice; they recently put programming in the standard curriculum starting at first grade.
However, they’re not diving into axing algebraic manipulation from the curriculum yet; rather Computer Based Math (abbreviated CBM) is planning to “rewrite key years of school probability and statistics from scratch”. This is a reasonable first step given statistics is often taught computer based or at least calculator based these days (my colleague who teaches AP Statistics next door does so) and it does feel very silly to work through a passel of “figure out the standard deviation” problems by hand.
However, I’m going…
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